March 22, 2011
Where angels fear to tread
Interesting novel. It moves pretty quickly and has good characters. Smells a little of Henry James' "international situation" novels where the up-tight Britisher has his or her eyes opened by going to some "pagan" country like Italy. It is a false cliche these days --Britain being about as pagan as any other country, and the Italians as down to earth as most inhabitants of Earth-- but a century ago I assume the notion of traveling to Italy was a little like slumming to the English. If you can get past this cliche it is a good novel but, really, the ending is close to ridiculous in its improbability. The novel could use a bit more sublimity.